As promised by Jim Moran at Moran's Dockside, a couple of Avalon-based boats took trips offshore to the Hot Dog south of Cape May to scope out the deep in advance of this week's Avalon Offshore Open.

Dick Purkis on Tiger worked the Hot Dog for six yellowfin tuna and Bill May on Boss Lady pulled up short of the Hot Dog and racked up four. According to Dan Newcomb at Moran's, they were caught on a daytime chunk, which is usually with sardines and butterfish. Captains and crews also bottom fish with live spot: and troll with green machines, ballyhoo, birds, daisy chains and cedar plugs for tuna.

The Avalon Offshore Open is an all-release only points system for billfish. Tuna weigh-ins are 5:30-7:30 p.m. on the fishing days of Thursday, Friday and Saturday at Avalon Sportfishing Center, 14th and Ocean Drive. The pre-tournament meeting is 6 p.m. Wednesday (July 25), and it is captain's choice for their one day of fishing. Call 609-368-1321.

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Mike Shepherd is the retired sports editor of The Press. His Shep on Fishing column and Shep's Hot Spot appear Tuesdays and Saturdays in the sports section and daily on-line. Call 609-350-0388 or email

You can also hear Shep's on-air fishing reports Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 6:05 a.m., 9:45 a.m. and 7:05 p.m. on WOND 1400 AM and on our website.

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